GUIDE: University of Newcastle Medical School Interview 2023 Guide
Before the Interview
After you send off your UCAS application, the university screens each application with a range of tools. You can read about them here
The Interview at Newcastle: Explained
Based on whether you are a UK-student or an international student, you will experience a different style of interview. However, the skills assessed and questions asked are the same in each, despite the different formats.
UK students: MMI
International students: Classic panel interview
Newcastle has 7 stations at 7 minutes each. This includes a minute of reading time in between each station. There is also an extra 2 minutes at the beginning used for an ice-breaker. In total, the interview should last about an hour.
This interview usually lasts around 30 minutes and is undertaken with 2 interviewers making up the panel. Students are given a choice regarding whether they want an online interview, or if they wish to come to visit the campus.
What Questions Will I Be Asked in the Newcastle Medical School Interview?
The questions vary each year, but they all revolve around the same themes. Newcastle has published the main qualities they are looking for, and below we go through what they are and how you could be asked about them.
What principles should a doctor follow? You could be asked what integrity means to you, to work through a hypothetical scenario of unprofessionalism, or you could be asked to talk about a personal experience where you may have come across unprofessional behaviour.
Top tip: the GMC guidelines are key here! Make sure you are aware of what the guidelines say and link them back to your own experiences!
This is key in medicine, and nearly all universities will ask you about your communication skills. Some universities may even assess them through role-play.
One of Newcastle’s stations will most likely be role-play, and one of the key things they will assess is how you communicate, your body language, and how you build a rapport with someone.
You could also be asked to talk about a task where good communication was essential or about a time when you witnessed good or bad communication skills.
Top tip: this could be communication between a doctor and a patient, or it could be between a doctor and a nurse in an MDT setting. Always draw on your work experience and make sure to reflect on what you saw!
Empathy and Self-Awareness
Empathy is a very important quality to have as a doctor, and the interviewers will want to make sure you understand its importance.
They could ask you how you would approach a difficult situation, e.g., a patient being cautious about treatment. They could also ask you about an ethical scenario and ask your views on a difficult topic such as euthanasia or abortion. Top tip: remember to link back to the 4 pillars of medical ethics.
Motivation and commitment to be a doctor
This is a very important part of the interview, and you will likely be asked about this by all universities!
Universities often no longer ask the typical question of ‘Why do you want to do medicine?" You are more likely to be asked why medicine over other healthcare professions, or to talk about your work experiences and how they shaped your view of the profession
Compatibility with the MBBS programme
This refers to both the degree and the university! You may be asked what skills you have that would make you a good doctor, or you may be asked to talk about why you chose to apply to Newcastle out of all the other universities!
The university may also ask you about your hobbies and pastimes, to make sure you are able to relax and manage the workload
Teamwork (including leadership)
Teamwork and leadership are very important attributes of a medical student and a doctor. You can be assessed for this by being asked about a time you worked in a team/as a leader, or by asking you to display some qualities of a leader/good teamwork. A classic example is "explain how to tie a shoelace without using shoes, or hand gestures."
This is another trait many universities look for in a medical student. Common questions include: ‘How do you balance your time?’ and ‘Tell me how you stay organised’
Persistence and resilience
Medicine is a taxing course and career, and the university wants to see that you will manage it.
You may be asked to talk about personal experiences where you have had to be resilient or to talk about why resilience is such an important quality in medicine.
I know the interview is a nerve-wracking moment, but the universities are not trying to catch you out, I promise! They really do just want to know what type of person you are. Practice with friends and family, but ultimately, be confident in your abilities! Good luck, you’ve got this!
To further strengthen your application book interview tutoring with us to make your application the strongest it can be. To test yourself in a simulation of the real thing, book a 1-1 Newcastle mock interview with us today. We have built this using the information published by the university online.